By the end of 2015, Wi-Fi and hybrid technologies will make up the majority of the systems that navigate users in locations covered by nearly 91,000 digital indoor positioning maps, according to a research note by IHS’s Jamie Fox, principal analyst with IHS Technology.

Wi-Fi has the most appeal because of its low costs, ease of use and existing infrastructure, despite not being the most accurate of methods. Hybrid systems often combine Wi-Fi, smartphone sensors and other data systems. The most common technologies used for this purpose are Wi-Fi, Bluetooth/beacon technologies, smartphone sensors and LED lighting.

The types of use cases that can be expected by the Wi-Fi and hybrid systems are: finding friends in a crowded bar or concert, finding products in a large store, location-based gaming and tracking employees -- especially for firefighters, physicians, and other emergency services staff, as well as employees at large offices or factories.

The number of positioning maps is expected to more than double by 2020. Currently, the retail environment is leading the market. Other location positioning improvement opportunities exist in airports, education and public facilities as well as private businesses.

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